18 November 2018


102-year-old Koko Sekhakhu still going strong

by: Thato Kepu   date: 08 june 2018

An average South African is expected to live to around 
the age of 53, according to Statistics SA, because of numerous diseases and unhealthy lifestyles. This makes it hard for an average South African to reach 80 years or live beyond that age. 

But Koko Akara Mashama Sekhakhu has defied the odds and is now 102 years old. 

This remarkable woman lives in Tshidilamolomo, one of the remote villages about 100 kilometres west of Mahikeng. Koko Sekhakhu stays with her granddaughter and a great-granddaughter. 

One of the most interesting things about this elderly woman is that she doesn’t take any medication for any disease. She managed to sustain a healthy lifestyle through the long walks she took as a young girl and doing chores such as fetching wood from the forest, fetching water from far away places and actively playing with her peers. 

She said these kept her fit and she’s never been bothered by illhealth throughout the years. Her only challenge is that she is blind and cannot walk because of old age, so Koko Sekhakhu uses a wheelchair to get around. 

Sekhakhu is one of the several elderly people in the country who will be celebrating the centenary of the late struggle icon, Nelson Mandela, and the government will keep looking for more centenarians so they can tell their stories and be part of the celebrations of the late anti-apartheid struggle icon. 

When asked how she managed to get to such an unbelievable age, she said it is only God who protected her throughout her life. 

“It was much better in the olden days when children listened to their parents and there was no such things as rights. Nowadays children are unruly as they hide behind the guise of rights. We no longer know what is happening and this is affecting future generations negatively,” said Koko Sekhakhu.

Koko Akara, as she is affectionately known, has been a member of the A.M.E Church for many years and she went on to sing some of the hymns she loves the most. She has outlived even her children who have both passed on.